If you lost your job today, would you be able to start sending out your resume tomorrow?
Your resume tells people who you are and what you did for a company. It doesn't tell who you are on a personal level, just what you have accomplished in your career. I can say with certainty that the majority of us do not experience the same day twice! Everyday your experiences are new, you deal wth problems, achieve milestones and take on extra work. All of this information must go in your resume! Do you really remember what you did last April let alone last month? You need to be constantly recording what you do. If you'd like a sample template of how I record my achievements/challenges, e-mail me at email@example.com.
You need to maintain a master resume, one that lists everything you have possibly done. Then, depending on the job you are applying for, you need to edit the resume to match your past experience with the responsibilities of the new job.
Your master resume should include:
FACTS - Writing a bullet point that states you sell your company's product does not say ANYTHING about your accomplishments! You have to tell them how many products you sold over what period of time and how what you did contributed directly to the company's bottom line. This information tells people to hire you because you are motivated and can make them money. Quantify your achievements as much as you can. You need to keep track of this data as well.
ACCOMPLISHMENTS - Brag about yourself, tell the reader why you're the best, and try and quantify it if you can. For example, I managed 100 unique partners over the past two years and no one on my team at work can say that. I have also worked with more partners in specific industries, making me the expert in that industry.
COMMUNITY ACTIVITIES - Most people will say they do not have time to volunteer and that's not true. You need to make time! Some companies even allow you a couple days off a year to volunteer (this time does not affect your vacation days). Ask your HR Department if they offer this benefit, and if they don't offer that program, ask them WHY?! Use community activities to offer your skills and help those less fortunate. I love to mentor, I volunteered once a week for a year at Arizona Quest for Kids.
INTRO STATEMENT- About a year ago I started writing a one sentence intro statement before my bullets. I wrote this after my resume was done for each job. This statement serves to sum up ALL the bullets. If someone is scanning your resume among hundreds you want them to really see what you have done, make it easy with this one-liner. Also, if you have worked at one job for a long time you NEED to break up your job roles. Maybe you had multiple jobs in the same company. A sample sentence could be "Managed customer service, evaluated and monitored client satisfaction, and addressed obstacles." Then your bullets would support this statement with facts.
Just remember if you've worked for the same company for a number of years that's still no excuse to not update your resume. You should do this at least once a quarter, at the bare minimum, twice a year! If you have any questions please feel free to e-mail me anytime firstname.lastname@example.org.
****If you are out of work and need some help editing your resume, then e-mail me and I would be happy to spend my time helping you over the phone. This is only for the first five people that e-mail me! Please note this is at least a four-hour commitment and you need to actively participate. I will not write your resume for you. If you have a job and are just looking to update it, I also provide this service, check out my page .